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DRUGS RELATED DEATH CASES

911 examinations were made by the municipal and regional branches of “Forensic medical ex-

amination  and  pathological  anatomy” Association  of  the  Ministry  of  Health  of  the  Republic  of 

Azerbaijan for finding out narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances within the reporting period. 

During these examinations, narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances were found in 77 cases. 

Out of them in 34 cases death  happened due to influence of narcotic drugs and psychotropic 



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NATIONAL DRUG PREVENTION OFFICE

substances, but in 37 cases it was not cause of death although narcotic drugs and psychotropic 

substances were found.

Besides this, narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances were found in 6 cases while examining 

alive people.

Moreover with a view of implementing its internal action plan for 2011 the Scientific and Research 

Institute of Forensic Medicine, Criminalistics and Criminology of the Ministry of Justice made fo-

rensic examinations based on generalization of narcotic drugs, psychotropic substances and its 

precursors seized in penitentiary facilities in 2006-2012. As a result methodic recommendations 

have been designed and presented to the Penitentiary Service according to the Plan of Action 

of the Ministry of Justice. Methodic aids developed by the Forensic Medicine Center were also 

handed over to the Penitentiary Service for internal use in order to enhance efficiency of fight 

against narcotic drugs. Within the framework of scientific and methodic activitiy the below listed 

activities have also been carried out:

•   methodic letters on detection, sampling for comparative examination, storage, packaging, 

documentation and transportation of material evidences were sent to the investigation authori-

ties;

•   with a view of providing practical assistance to forensic experts, the Handbook on Recom-



mended Methods of the Cannabis Examination describing ways of detection and analysis of 

variuos narcotic groups under international control was published;

•   research under the thesis on Legal, Scientific, Methodical and Organizatonal Grounds of the 

Narcotic Drugs Examination is continued. 



PREVENTION OF DRUG RELATED CRIMES

In 2012 various state agencies and NGOs carried out certain studies and analytical works in order 

to identify current problems of youth on early prevention of drug addiction and related offences. 

As a result of studies it has been found out that young people are quite enough informed about 

gravity of the problem, negative consequences of drug addiction and related offences surround-

ing them. However some gaps still exist in awareness raising. These gaps are seen in following 

aspects:

•   Young people are less informed about principle (direct) factors of the narcotic drugs negative 

impact;

•   Few groups of young people were involved in implementation of special events and projects 



against drug addiction as well as those ones on AIDS preventon and healthy lifestyle. It also 

indicates on weaknesses in prevention work;

•   More than half of young people does not have clear idea about AIDS. Relatively small part of 

young people possess explicit information about AIDS transmission and risk factors;



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•   Lack of knowledge about laws causes their easy involvement in crime committing;

•   Only Mass Media and social environment play pro-active role as sources in awareness rais-

ing but education facilities and organizations dealing with youth affairs look passive in this 

process.

•   Outcomes of surveys conducted by the Ministry of Youth and Sport indicate on gravity of prob-

lem in identification of young drug addicts.

Some of principles listed below could be used as guiding ones in arranging preventive work:

•   Cooperation (both interdepartmental and at the Task Forces level);

•   Professional approach;

•   Inclusion of youth in all relevant activities;

•   Sustainability and follow-up of activities;

•   Prevention based on individual approach;

•   Principle of equality;

•   Development of voluntariness and arranging large-scale volunteers movement;

•   Experience exchange and professional skills enhancement;

•   Establishment of monitoring and evaluation mechanisms for activities implemented;

•   Development of the system preventing neglect, dropping out school and leaving family by 

minors;

•   Establishing contacts with young people recreational places and clubs and supporting proj-



ects that cover such entertaining places.

INTERNATIONAL COOPERATION ON COMBATTING 

ILLICIT DRUG TRAFFICKING 

As you know, taking into account the importance of international cooperation in fighting against 

drugs, the Republic of Azerbaijan joined to 1961 Convention on Narcotic Drugs, 1971 Conven-

tion on Psychotropic Substances and 1988 UN Convention on Fighting Against Illegal Trafficking 

of Narcotic Drugs, Psychotropic Substances and Precursors, conlcuded bilateral and multilateral 

agreements with several countries, signed memorandums.

Transnational nature of the drug trafficking necessitates international cooperation to combat this 

type of crime. For this reason the relevant state agencies of Azerbaijan cooperate closely and 

implement joint activities with the UNODC, WCO, CARICC, GUAM and other international orga-

nizations. 

Moreover in order to combat effectively illicit trafficking in narcotic dugs, psychotropic substances 

and its precursors the State Customs Committee participates on regular basis in international 

operational activities (called provisionally “Narcostop-2011”) on combating illicit trafficking in nar-

cotic drugs, psychotropic substances and its precursors in the GUAM member-states which is 



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NATIONAL DRUG PREVENTION OFFICE

held within the framework of the organizational and practical actions plan for law enforcement 

divisions of the Council of CIS Customs Services Chiefs and GUAM Task Force on fight against 

terrorizm, organized crime, illicit drug trafficking and other serious crimes.



INTERNATIONAL REVIEw

Though the problem of drug traffickimg and addiction is tackled both individually at the national 

level and mutually within the framework of international  cooperation,  every year it is reported 

about overall rise in number of drug addicted persons. More than 208 mln. persons worldwide 

use narcotic drugs to a greater or lesser extent. It is 4.8% of the world population. Most of them, 

i.e. more than 165 mln., are users of marijuana which is relatively «light» narcotic drug. 26 mln. 

persons are drug addicted persons. Studies show that number of heroin, opium and hashish us-

ers goes up. 

Afghanistan continues to be a world «leader» among countries producing narcotic drugs. Obser-

vations made for 2000-2009 show that manufacturing of narcotic drugs rised many times both in 

Afghanistan and other countries. If in 2007 total areas under drug contained plants were about 

235,700 hectares, this figure is more than 238,000 hectares in 2012. Narcotic drugs manufac-

tured in Afghanistan are mainly trafficked to Europe through Iran and South Caucasus countries 

including Azerbaijan.  Drug  trafficking  routes  going  through Azerbaijan  vary  from  year  to  year. 

Several  years  ago  the  main  trafficking  routes  were  like Afghanistan-Iran-Azerbaijan-Russia  or 

Afghanistan-Iran-Azerbaijan-Georgia-Europe, later route like Afghanistan-Central Asia-Azerbai-

jan (through the Caspian Sea) - Georgia (land borders) - Europe is more frequently used by drug 

traffickers.

According to the UNODC in 2007-2011, 32,200 tons of opium were produced at total areas of 

727,000 hectars in Aghanistan. Drug dealers are exploring new routes for trafficking produced 

narcotic drugs to the black markets of European and other countries. From this prospective the 

strategic geopolitical location of Azerbaijan between producer (Asian countries) and user (Euro-

pean countries) of narcotic drugs and availability of good land, railway, air, sea networks make 

this country «attractive» for illicit trafficking in narcotic drugs to Europe, so attempts are made by 

drug traffickers to use territory of Azerbaijan as a transit corridor for illicit trafficking in narcotic 

drugs.  


In addition socioeconomic problems of the transition period, migration processes affect the fight 

against illicit trafficking in narcotic drugs. Occupation of more than 20% of the national territories 

of Azerbaijan and control by the Armenian armed forces over 132 km state border line between 

Azerbaijan and Iran contribute to significant drug flows from those territories and via that border 

line to Europe, Black Sea region countries and other states. Huge revenues from manufacturing 

of and trafficking in narcotic drugs at the territories of Azerbaijan occupied by the Armenian armed 

forces are used for establishing and further training groups of terrorists and in its tur it jeopardizes 


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overall situation substantially.



NEw APPROACHES AND RECOMMENDATIONS

New social factors emerging in modern social and economic environment increase pressure on 

personality of minors and youth. Unstable and interpersonal relations maintained in the society 

cause deviant reactions among young people. Going through psychological sublimation prism 

behaviour of young people takes often associal shapes. Such associal behaviour result in wide 

dissemination of negative developments in our everyday life. Unfortunately due to some objec-

tive reasons society is unable to explore all opportunities and means to direct behaviour of young 

people to the positive course. One of the bright examples of such inability is tobacco and alcohol 

use: impossibility to prohibit fully alcohol and tobacco use in the society and quite uneffective ar-

rangement of antialcohol and antitobacco campaigns cause their wide addiction by minors since 

early ages. 

Local young people form their informal groups, sub-cultures based on negative western ones in-

troduced the country via telecommunications. As a result young people of the country use widely 

not only tobacco and alcohol but also toxic substances and narcotic drugs. Use of such substanc-

es became inalienable part of some already formed youth subcultures. 

According to recent studies conducted by the EU «Reitox» Academy there is direct correlation 

between use of tobacco, alcohol, toxic, psychoactive and narcotic drugs in west youth subculture 

forms. Last years EU has been applying comprehensive methodology and strategy of preventing 

drug, tobacco, alcohol, toxic substances addiction, gambling, morally depraved lifestyle, neglect, 

prostitution and other negative developments. 

Sociological studies conducted among young people in Azerbaijan brought to light a number of 

problems with perception of this issue, inclusion of young people in preventive activities as well as 

with awareness raising. According to social surveys, though local youth have general ideas about 

consequences of drug addiction they do not apprehend all gravity of this evil.

Studies and surveys conducted in this sphere do not remain ineffectual. A number of new recom-

mendation has been designed to analyse the work on prevention of drug addiction and other rel-

evant consequences, and these recommendations are expected to be included in special national 

program for further implementation.

Core principle in arranging awareness raising campaigns against drug, toxic, alcohol and tobacco 

addiction is to take into consideraton individual peculiarities.



•  Set of measures on raising awareness of young people about harm of narcotic drugs

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NATIONAL DRUG PREVENTION OFFICE

and other related asocial developments

Key stakeholders that will ensure implementing these measures are educational facilities, health 

care and law enforcement authorities, NGOs, Mass Media, etc. It should be regulated by ap-

plicable laws and implemented by relevant agencies in planned manner within the framework of 

special projects. Awareness raising may be also held through advertisments, special campaigns, 

movements of youth volunteers and other events.



•  Set of early preventive measures

Activities in this direction include early identification of risk groups and factors among young peo-

ple and undertaking early measures. For instance if fact of narcotic drugs occasional use is early 

established it would create proper environment for treatment and providing social and psychologi-

cal assistance to «beginners». 

Stakeholdres for implementation such kind of measures in the country are Ministries of Educa-

tion, Health, Internal Affairs, special commissions on work with children, minors and youth un-

der local administrations, local sub-commissions of the State Drug Control Commission. Various 

methods are used to support these measures: interviews and meetings with young people, or 

special raides to detect cases of absence from school, depravity, dissoluteness,

 

as well as drug 



dens. Preventive measures with participation of parents could also be added here. 

•  One of the most important aspects in this direction is system of actions taken to elimi­

nate lack of control

These actions include measures against dissoluteness,

 

leaving family and missing among chil-



dren, minors and youth.

•  Services of psycholigical assistance to youth

Young people living in social tensity and hardship every day may encounter conflicts of various 

levels (interpersonal, intra-family, intrapersonal etc.). As a result they suffer from stress, psycho-

logical tenseness, depression, etc. Sometimes they response to such a situation by inadequate, 

deviant behaviour. This deviant behaviour causes problems and associal situations, as well as 

using narcotic drugs. 

Special services providing psychological asistance should be established in order to help young 

people to find appropriate way out from tense situation. Psychologists should be available and 

really working in all schools and other educational institutions. Psychological assistance centers 

and trust lines should be established and accessible for young people. Availability of such ser-

vices will help to prevent drug addiction and other asocial cases, including suicides among youth.

•  Set of measures aimed at providing spare time and employment of young people

 Lack of these two factors is still described as a reason creating environment for spreading drug 

addiction and other asocial cases. It is partly truth. Existence of problem of unemployment and 


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ineffective use of spare time promote to deviant behaviour of young people, committing offences, 

dependence  from  psychoactive  substances  as  well  as  push  them  to  other  wrongdoings.  It  is 

irrefutable  fact  that  because  of  unemployment  or  inactivity  young  people  are  involved  in  illicit 

drug trafficking, other crimes, asocial cases like prostitution, fraud, begging, etc. Special state 

programs, action plans, system of events are very much needed to remove these reasons. One 

of the principal provisions of the policy introduced by our respected President Ilham Aliyev gives 

impetus to social and economic development of the country regions with further solution of un-

employment problem among youth. Measures on providing spare time should also be elaborated 

and included in relevant action plans.



•  Set of measures on inclusion in social activities

These measures include broader voluntary involvement of young people in fight against drug 

addiction and other asocial phenomena. In this case already available methodologies could be 

used, for instance method of «equal to equal» Inclusion programs produce good results all over 

the world, because several problems are comprehensively solved there.

• young people find themselves important for society and move away from psychologi-

cal tenseness because of availing opportunities for self-realization in certain area;

• young people find environment of sensible associates;

• young people spend their spare time effectively;

• problems of neglect and deviation among young people reduce;

• young people get real chances to achieve goals that they set out for themselves, etc.

•  Set of measures aimed at advocating healthy lifestyle

These measures prioritize advocating sport comprehensively, e.g. Olympic movement, national 

sports, etc. This direction should also cover set of measures aimed at eradicating bad habits. It is 

extremely important to have special programs in this area. 



•  Set of measures in teaching and educational system

Measures to be developed in this direction may include focusing teaching and educational pro-

cess in all schools and institutions at individual approach, improving applied methods in line with 

new standards and methodologies, enhancing qualitative indicators of the process, deepening 

relations between school and family, implementing secondary projects that encourage upbringing 

minors in their families, etc. 

Other important principles of arranging preventive work are as follows:

• The barest necessity of close cooperation between NGO sector and relevant state agen-

cies

• Getting healthy life habits within the inclusion process



• Involvement in combating process, sport events, socially useful work, etc.

• Wide use of encouragement. Financial encouragement of specialists and volunteers in-



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NATIONAL DRUG PREVENTION OFFICE

volved in preventive work;

• Providing relevant training courses on upgrading skills and knowledge of officials of the 

state agencies working with youth. Arranging study tours of those officials to other agencies, 

NGOs, foreign counterparts;

• Wide application of audio-visual aids. Prioritizing interactive methods. Stepping away from 

routine meetings and workshops.

• Setting up information, support and resource centers functionning on permanent basis. 

Such centers may implement coordination functions. 

• Professional approach to the work with youth, wide involvement of psychologists, sociolo-

gists, teachers, physicians, lawyers and other specialists in this work;

• Better exploring of cooperation mechanisms between relevant agencies while arranging 

preventive and warning measures;

• Designing of national web-portals and resources;

• Use of audio-visual, presentation materials;

• Developing professional, methodological materials as well as those ones for youth and 

parents. 


 NOTES

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